Here we are. It was just about two decades ago that Paul Milgram, a professor at University of Toronto introduced the idea of reality-virtuality continuum to us. And, oh boy! We have travelled and ravelled miles and dimensions in these few years.

The human condition is based on evolution. And trending in the evolution sector is Augmented Reality.

Well, what really is Augmented Reality? This is a technology that allows you to see the product in your relative surroundings. It superimposes a computer-generated image in your view of the real world. Hence, giving a more enhanced version of reality to you.

Yes. It sounds like the future.

But guess what. It is used everywhere around us. In places we don’t even know. One such hidden sector is the manufacturing industry.

Augmented Reality came in quietly and took over the industry. With so many miniscule parts and complicated assembly, it became a power packed tool for us to use.

Here are a few ways in which AR is used in the manufacturing industry:

1. Assembly

Speed is the foundation of our time. There are a million small parts and tools that when put together in the perfect manner will get us the final product. Everything from smart phones to rockets all have a set of assembly instructions. In most companies these tend to be in the form of pdfs. And are most likely outdated documents.

So, not only are we wasting time but due to this we may also be wasting indispensable parts of the product. Those set of instructions are taken and made into a format that can be viewed from your point of view. References from the ideal way to put it together are also taken.

The instructions are broken into steps. It also has a mention of the technical drawings. This changes the entire dynamic of spending hours on figuring out which part goes where. Get it right on the first try with augmented reality!

This is a method that has been tried, tested and implemented successfully tonnes of times.

2. Maintenance

Everything that is built, will once break. And with Augmented Reality we embrace that fact and make the best use of it. Maintenance in terms of the manufacturing industry is one of the most integral parts.

Currently in a lot of places, there are miles long maintenance manuals. These can take years to read and memorize. And who has that kind of time anymore? With the help of our secret tool we can make this entire process a lot simpler.

Imagine this. You can see the status of the machine in front of you just with the help of a handheld gadget. Think of the time it saves. No more hours spent on diagnosis.

If these simple strategies are taught to the maintenance and service agents it will amp up the entire experience for everyone.

3. Training

Augmented Reality also opens up a lot of doors when it comes to training individuals to operate the machinery and conduct processes. There is only so much that can be taught in textbooks.

The world is now jumping into much more creative ways. You do not have to send your employees to go and train people anymore. You can send these demo videos to them and you are set. All you need is a flat surface!

We tried this out a couple of times and the response was always smashing!

We once did a project with a four-stroke engine. You get the options of ‘learn’ and ‘assemble’ with it. When “assemble” is picked, the product breaks apart in all the separate parts. You then have to pick up each part and place it in the right location. Only when you put each part where it is meant to will it show as done.

Like with our manufacturing demonstration of the dry milling process, you can pick what part of the process you want to see. You can see where it begins and what to do next. You can view all the parts and understand their part in the process. This is the best possible way to pass on information.

A small touch of VR and simulations could amplify the training game up even higher. Who wouldn’t want to learn this way?

4. Product Design

This process begins way before the manufacturing and all the other processes begin. And at a time like this, Augmented Reality is of most help. It aids in reducing the development cycle time. Before even having to spend time and money in creating prototypes, the team can use Augmented Reality. They can see and ‘move’ the product around to make the required decisions.

Also, we can spot mistakes way before time. The quality of the product gets much better as well. We can compare the digitally made product with the final product to spot any changes that happened in the manufacturing process.

Another important thing that Augmented Reality gives to us, is context. Yes. you can see and move the product. But another bonus is, that you can see the relation between the product and the immediate surroundings! We can feel the presence of the product!

We can collaborate better with people across the map. Maybe someone sitting in Iceland is a part of your process. Guess what, he can interact with the product too!

The one aspect that matters the most in the phase of design, is visualization. And what better technology do we have than AR?

5. Sales and Marketing

And this brings us to our last point. Sales and Marketing. Whenever we buy a certain product we want to go and experience it. But what if we could do you better? What if you could have the product with you, in your space, without even having to get up.

With the help of AR we get to see humongous products and how they will fit around us. With the world of online buying becoming so big, this tool is certainly required.

A great example of this was our Elevator project. With the application, you could see and choose the kind of lift you wanted. You could place it in the area of your choice. And what is the coolest thing of all? You get to go inside the lift and experience it. You can even shut the doors!

Isn’t it maddening where technology is taking us? And we have just scratched the first layer of it yet! There is so much to know and so much to see.

Our reality just got altered and we want to share it all with you. This is just the very beginning! We invite you to take this roller coaster of a journey with us!

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